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Old 05-31-2021, 03:53 PM   #1
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Help me understand payload

I've read lots on this forum and others and am still a little confused on the payload capability of a truck.

For background we are buying a 2014 Open Range Mesa Ridge Bunkhouse Fifth Wheel Series M-367BHS from our neighbors who no longer use it. We currently have a pop up camper, so it will be a nice upgrade!

The yellow sticker on the 5th wheel shows the UVW as 11,220 and says the weight of cargo should never exceed 2049 lbs, so max load would be 13,269 lbs.

By my calculations the payload will be 20% of the trailer (~2,600 lbs) + hitch (150 lbs) + family of 6 and our dog (call it ~1000 lbs total for padding). So I'm tracking I need a payload capacity of 3,750 lbs.

We are looking for a new truck to pull it and stopped by a local Ford dealer today (I'm brand agnostic, just stopped by the one in town to start looking). The sticker inside the door of the F-350 SRW Diesel they showed me stated that combined weight of occupants and cargo should never exceed 3,352 lbs. I told them I wanted to one with a 3,750 rating (tracking that that may be in DRW type numbers, but hoping to keep SRW), and they showed me the attached photo from their commercial sales guy which shows that the truck we looked at has a payload of 4,420 and that the label inside the door is the tire guide, not payload.

I'm skeptical and think that the 4,420 number is likely for a gas model vs a diesel and the sticker is the true payload, but would like some confirmation or correction if I'm mistaken.

Thank you.
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Old 05-31-2021, 04:37 PM   #2
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The sticker on the door jam is your actuel weights and tells you what your actuel capacity is printed by the manufacturer of the vehicle. An after the fact printed out piece of paper by the dealer with highlighted circles is a sign to RUN LIKE THE WIND BULLSEYE & NEVER GO BACK THERE.
Ive found most dealers don't have a clue what a specific vehicle can haul an either make something up based on the best numbers promoted or just actuelly go and look at the door sticker because that's the end all be all bottom line.
I currently have a drw ram 3500 towing beast but that's because I need to be able to haul the weight of the world in the rv were having built. We had a 2016 ram 2500 diesel and it pulled our current 35' 13k fiver with the greatest of ease, and the fuel millage was much better than this 3500. This is just my opinion but i wouldn't want to own a drw 3500 unless i needed it to haul big weight and would stick with a 2500, it had plenty of power and capacity up to 17k and a much easier truck to maneuver when not towing. I know you said you wanted to try and stick with a 3500 srw but honestly unless you need to haul upwards of 17k-21k than i would stick with a 2500 .Just my .02 worth
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Old 05-31-2021, 04:39 PM   #3
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I believe the truck rides on the tires so......

That's a salesman for you. You are wise to ask the questions. Yes, you can find a single rear wheel truck that will handle that much weight, (don't forget the weight of the 5th wheel hitch in the bed as well), but the door sticker is the measure of the payload no matter what. The wheels, tires, axles etc. are all sized accordingly. If they could simply swap tires to gain more capacity they would but there is no point if the suspension, brakes etc. will not support that much weight.

Yes, the diesel will have a little less payload and everything that is optional equipment will take a little payload away so you will need to do a balancing act between the options you feel you need and the payload capacity. At that weight a diesel is desirable although the new 7.3 gas motor with 10 speed transmission would work very well also and may be more palatable as a daily driver. Of course if you go dually then you can add pretty much whatever options you desire with little worry as that should give you over 5000 pounds of cargo capacity.

Of course there is a third wrinkle and that is that trucks are super rare right now, new and especially used. Prices are well over MSRP and inventory is scarce so probably the worst time to buy a new truck. If it's any consolation I am in the same boat, needing an F450 but not willing to pay $80,000 plus for one right now.
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Old 05-31-2021, 05:53 PM   #4
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The door sticker is the correct payload capacity. If you need 3700 lbs of load capacity you are in dually territory. I did the SRW 3500 Ram for 2 years with my 13000 lb Fifth wheel. I had 2500 lbs of pin weight with 300 lbs of hitch. It towed ok. I got into some cross winds. It pushed me around. It was never a comfortable tow. My pin weight is 2730 lbs now. My fifth wheel is 41 ft long. I moved to a 2017 F350 dually. Best towing truck I ever had. I maybe able to get a srw 1 ton close to the load capacity but my fifth wheel would max a srw truck out. I just did a 1000 mile round trip. It was windy on the way home. Only way I knew was getting outside the truck or my fuel mileage was 9.4 mpg vice 10 or 11. You can never have to much truck.
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Old 05-31-2021, 06:17 PM   #5
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Payload/Cargo Carrying Capacity---one and the same

Payload is based on trucks GVWR minus the UVW
Both numbers are set by Truck MFG

What you really need to pay attention to is the trucks RAWR and Tire MAX Load Rating

Pin weight of 5th wheel is carried by trucks rear axle/tires
22% WET Pin on that 13,269 GVWR 5vr would be 2919#
Stay at/under RAWR/Tire Load Ratings and go camping

F350 SRW will be safe/capable tow vehicle for that GVWR 5vr

My 2007 3500 SRW and our 2007 14K 5th wheel are a very good match...safe/capable/reliable set up
FTd for 7 yrs traveling weekly...NEVER a 'white knuckle' ride, pushed around etc and we traveled in ALL kinds of weather all over the USA
WET pin is 3080# with 13,873# actual weight
And I guarantee the RAWR is lower then what that new F350 SRW will have
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Old 05-31-2021, 06:30 PM   #6
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I beg to differ on you can never have to much truck. I surely don't need a $85k duelly that can haul a 35,000 lb trailer to be able to haul my current 13,000lb fiver. It would be a totally waste of a truck snd money if I hadn't planned on having a custom 26,000 lb fiver built. The ram 2500 6.7 can tow a 13,000lb trailer like nothing is there as its rated for 17k. The only reason someone may want a drw to haul 13,000lbs is for better stability because its definitly not needed . Plus 3000lbs of pl didn't even budge the 2500s rear suspension. Plus with the 2500 rfe transmition I got 13mpg pulling the 13k rig and by itself I got 21mpg. That's way better than my drw that gets at 9 and 13 at best.
To the op, it's ok if you want s 3500 and get one, do what you want, but it's way overkill for 13,000 lbs. Do what's in your best interest as all of us are going to have our own swayed opinions,, including myself. Do your research and go with facts.
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Old 05-31-2021, 08:20 PM   #7
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If you can find an F350 srw with a diesel, 4X4, crew cab, 18 or 20 wheels with all terrain tires and a long bed you can get 12,400 GVWR and the payload you want. My Platinum has 4054 pounds of payload on the yellow sticker.
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Old 06-02-2021, 10:46 PM   #8
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Thank you everyone for your replies. It sounded like I was getting a sales pitch vs. actual data, so wanted to check on here. Appreciate all the advice.
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Old 06-03-2021, 02:58 PM   #9
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I am thinking you need a F-350 SRW with an 8' bed. The longer bed will give you a larger fuel tank plus just over a 4,000lb payload I think. With that payload you get more capacity tires to handle the extra weight. The 8' bed is also alot better when towing a 5th wheel.
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Old 06-17-2021, 05:59 PM   #10
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3500 are trucks are wonderful towing machines and daily drivers . My ram 3500 is a 12,300 gvwr truck and im right at payload capacity with my 5ver.

Also...20% on the pin (loaded) may be optimistic especially for the shorter trailers where most of the storage capacity is forward of the axles. I'm running 23%
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Old 06-18-2021, 05:32 AM   #11
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I don't agree with any 3/4 ton diesel 4x4 crew cab loaded with 4+ in the cab and a RV 5th that weights over 12,000lbs . it will most likely be right at the rear axle rating even loaded light with noting in the bed. 3/4 ton trucks have roughly a 6000lb rating and the rear axle is carrying 3400 lbs when it leaves the factory empty. again rough numbers that leaves you with roughly a 2000lb pin weight plus hitch plus occupant in the truck. ALL of the manufactures ratings are not accurate when it comes to RV style trailer where you can not change how much pin weight your putting in the truck. If you had a equipment trailer where you can change where the load is on the trailer to raise or lower the pin weight then Yes you could get to that magic number the OEM says you can tow but NOT with 5th wheel RVs. a one ton diesel will be maxed out a 14,000 GVW 5th wheel , in a few rare cases packed light a short bed, extra cab may get you to 15,500 trailer GVW but your into a area where the trailer will be pulling the back of the truck around as the pitch of the road changes or cross wind. I towed a 16,500 lb 5th wheel with a crew cab 4x4 diesel , my rear axle was 800lbs over weight , truck and trailer combine weight was right at 25,400. I had up graded to 19.5 wheels and tires on the truck to avoid blow outs (super single ) the tires had a good margin of safety at that point but the weight would steer the back of the truck even super singled. Fast forward I upgraded to a stock 2020 duelie 4x4 crew cab diesel is handles the load no problem . the off camber roads and cross winds don't effect the truck and trailer now. Before it was constant correction with the steering wheel , now I can day dream and still stay on track.

yes the 3/4 ton with air bags and larger tire can do the larger trailer but good luck , Its not fun or relaxing. You really need a 1 ton srw at a min. if you have any reservation of getting larger 5th wheel skip the SRW and get a DRW.
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Old 06-19-2021, 05:26 PM   #12
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A F-350, not a F-250, with a 8' bed can have just over 4,000lb payload.
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Old 06-19-2021, 06:26 PM   #13
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"one ton diesel will be maxed out a 14,000 GVW 5th wheel "

True not too many years ago but today's 1 ton srw diesels can do a little more. I'm towing a 15k 5ver right at my gvwr and it tows beautifully even in strong side winds .
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Old 06-19-2021, 08:35 PM   #14
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The new GM 2500 trucks have a 11550 gvwr and better yet a bigger 6600 rawr.

Those one ton srw gvwr based 4000 lb+ payload stickers are a joke if you plan on placing it all in the bed. A F350 srw rear axle can weigh in the 3300-3500 lb range depending. With a 7230 rating minus 3500 lbs = around 3700-3800 lb in the bed payload.

Just like Ford claiming the F150HDPP has a 3200-3300 lb payload. The F150HDPP rear axle may weigh in the 2400 lb range. Ford give the HDPP a 4800 rawr which leaves the rear axle with a 2400 lb in the bed payload before exceeding a tire or wheel or rear suspension ratings.

The payload sticker is for the truck as it leaves the factory. This changes once the owner adds necessary junk in the truck...heavy hitches...aux fuel tanks/etc
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